Here's how much memory you save with the new Galaxy S9 high-efficiency video codec


  • Much smaller file sizes
  • Negligible differences in video quality 


  • The high-efficiency format may be incompatible for playback or sharing, as Windows 10 is just now adding native HEVC decoders in beta releases

The Galaxy S9 and S9+ are some of the best video-recorders out there you can always carry with you, as they offer 4K 60fps footage, and high-efficiency video codec to save it in, like Apple's latest iPhones. We say "some of," as Sony's Xperia XZ2 can do true HDR video capture at 10-bit, and 960fps 1080p slow-mo, but it maxes out the 4K recording at 30fps, even though Snapdragon 845 can do 60fps. 

While that's the default on the S9, too, you can switch up to 60fps footage, like on the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or X, with the necessary warnings about resulting huge video files and so on. There is one more limitation that Samsung has placed on the new Galaxy S9 and S9+, though, and it's the 5-minute rule. For various reasons, Android manufacturers have been restricting the amount of time you can record at the highest video settings due to memory, processing power, and other tall orders. First it was with 4K 30fps video that Samsung allowed you to only capture five minutes of at a time, and now the same restrictions go to the newfangled 4K 60fps standard, while 30fps goes to 10 minutes.

Bummer, but if a Samsung goes all hot and bothered during a task, it's better to play it safe, and limit your breathtaking 4K 60fps sesh to five minutes or less, not to mention the amount of internal memory the footage will occupy at that length anyway, even in the high-efficiency video format that the S9 recordings support. So, how do you capture 4K footage, and how much space does it occupy in both formats, compared to the standard non-HEVC 1080p 30fps footage that is the default choice?

1. Go to Camera>Settings cog>Video size>UHD 60fps;

2. Samsung warns you that you will lose Tracking AF if enabled for fast-moving objects, but also electronic image stabilization (optical remains, though), and you can't apply any video effects, too;

3. Capturing 4K 60fps is limited to five minutes at a time, and 4K 30fps at 10 minutes;

4. Here's how much space you can save if you turn on the high-efficiency video codec capture switch (keep in mind that those files may be incompatible on many devices, or for sharing, as Windows is just now rolling out support in its latest beta releases):

As you can see, the difference in file sizes is huge - from mere 103MB for a minute of 1080p 30fps video (the default), to half a gig for a minute of 4K 60fps non-HEVC clip in the same conditions. So, why would you want to shoot in 4K 60fps in the first place? Well, it's way smoother and more gorgeous this way, playback and hardware abilities aside, plus frame editing gives you a much larger playground to wrestle with, and even with YouTube's compression videos look better.

Related phones

Galaxy S9
  • Display 5.8" 1440 x 2960 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Octa-core, 2800 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh(31h talk time)
Galaxy S9+
  • Display 6.2" 1440 x 2960 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Octa-core, 2800 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3500 mAh(35h talk time)



1. Humanoid

Posts: 1226; Member since: Dec 11, 2017

My computer runs w7. It does not play h265. Only audio. No EIS on 4K 60? Too bad

2. xfire99

Posts: 1206; Member since: Mar 14, 2012

Install H.265 codec then.


Posts: 234; Member since: Sep 24, 2015

Install vlc on windows 10/ android to play hevc

4. Boast_Rider

Posts: 535; Member since: Sep 14, 2017

You don't need vlc on windows 10 to play HEVC files. The default media player actually uses hardware acceleration vs software on VLC, hence displaying the files while consuming less battery.

5. Ciro1900

Posts: 591; Member since: Dec 17, 2017

No 4k hdr no buy

6. rsiders

Posts: 1970; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

But with the limitation of 5 minutes, it just chops the video into segments without having to hit the record button again correct?

7. yankel

Posts: 12; Member since: Dec 15, 2010

Those screen-grabs showing 60fps being sharper are misleading. The 60fps are shot at a faster shutter speed of 1/125 vs. 1/60 for the 30fps footage. That shot looks like a drone shot, so a faster shutter speed would definitely help. With all settings being the same aside from frame rate, I see no reason why one should be sharper.

8. LikeMyself

Posts: 631; Member since: Sep 23, 2013

720p 60fps still does an excellent job for me without the exorbitant space consumption!

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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